Tag Archives: stephanie

London 2012 Paralympics: Aileen McGlynn and Helen Scott win silver in time trial

McGlynn and Scott forced to settle for silver in blind and visually impaired time trial

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UPDATED:

10:22 GMT, 31 August 2012

Britain's Aileen McGlynn and Helen Scott had to settle for Paralympic silver in the women's blind and visually impaired time trial at the London 2012 velodrome as Australia won gold.

McGlynn and Scott clocked one minute 09.469 seconds, but Australia's Felicity Johnson and Stephanie Morton were last on the track and stole victory by 0.550secs in a Paralympic record of 1min 08.919secs.

It was the first time McGlynn has tasted Paralympic defeat in the event after the 39-year-old from Glasgow won gold in Athens and Beijing with Ellen Hunter as pilot.

Pedal to the medal: Helen Scott and Aileen McGlynn won silver in the Velodrome on Friday

Pedal to the medal: Helen Scott and Aileen McGlynn won silver in the Velodrome on Friday

Pipped to the post: McGlynn (left) and Scott (right) were beaten to gold by Australia in the final ride

Pipped to the post: McGlynn (left) and Scott (right) were beaten to gold by Australia in the final ride

McGlynn and Scott finished second to the Australian pair at the World Championships earlier this year and were runners-up once more.

New Zealand's Phillipa Gray and Laura Thompson claimed bronze in 1:11.245, with Britain's Lora Turnham and Fiona Duncan fourth in 1:11.479.

LONDON OLYMPICS 2012: Steph Houghton wants gold for Britain now

It's been a dream so far, but we want to go all the way and win gold now

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UPDATED:

23:54 GMT, 2 August 2012

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We've done what I don’t think we even dared to dream about: beat Brazil at the Games in front of 70,000 people.

We heard that there was going to be a record crowd but I didn’t expect there to be so many fans. It was amazing — for Great Britain and for women’s football.

I don’t know where my goalscoring run has come from! It’s great but I don’t care who scores as long as we keep winning.

What a win: Stephanie Houghton scores Britain's winner against Brazil at Wembley

What a win: Stephanie Houghton scores Britain's winner against Brazil at Wembley

When I was younger, I played up front for Sunderland but in the last few years I’ve turned into a full back.

The whole experience has been mind-blowing. We’re the first British women’s football team at the Olympics. We are a really tight group and we’re all buzzing.

You can’t explain what it feels like to be at the Olympics and part of Team GB. Hope Powell, our coach, has showed us all the newspapers after our matches and we’ve been front and back page news. It’s a massive boost for women’s football.

We’re all used to people saying: ‘Girls don’t play football.’ But now we’re playing on the biggest stage of all. It’s a reality check for people who were negative when we were younger, which is why I’m really thankful it’s gone so well so far.

Pure delight: Houghton celebrates Britain's win

Pure delight: Houghton celebrates Britain's win

It’s such a good thing for young girls to see because, when I was growing up, I looked up to David Beckham and Steven Gerrard. But there are female footballers in the spotlight now. We need to try to be role models because girls can now dream about playing football.

Meeting Beckham was amazing. He said he watched our games and liked the celebration we did after scoring against Cameroon.

I can’t tell you what that’s about, though. It’s a secret that we’re keeping to ourselves for now.

Can we win gold Beating Brazil has really boosted our confidence and we’re improving with every game. Canada will be really tough to beat, but against Brazil we showed how determined we are.

I hope we’ve shown that women’s football is actually really good.

Great Britain women's football team

Heather Watson through French Open first qualifying match

Watson on track to make second successive French Open after beating Fichman in qualifying

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UPDATED:

10:32 GMT, 23 May 2012

Heather Watson breezed through her first qualifying match at the French Open this morning against Canada's Sharon Fichman.

The 20-year-old, who is aiming to qualify for the main draw at Roland Garros for the second successive year, triumphed 6-1 6-2 to set up a meeting with either Aleksandra Krunic of Serbia or Turkey's Ons Jabeur.

Going through: Heather Watson beat Canada's Sharon Fichman

Going through: Heather Watson beat Canada's Sharon Fichman

Twelve months ago Watson became the first British woman to qualify at the tournament since Kate Brasher in 1983, while her first-round victory over Stephanie Foretz Gacon was the first in the main draw by a British woman since Clare Wood in 1994.

That run took the Guernsey player into the top 100 but she has struggled for form and fitness this season and is currently ranked 109th.

England footballers charity dinner for Lions and Roses

So, who bought what at the England Footballers Foundation dinner

The England team have turned out for the first time since Stuart Pearce took charge – at a charity dinner.

The main event at the first England Footballers Foundation ‘Lions and Roses’ dinner was an auction that raised an estimated 250,000.

And with tickets at 495 and nearly 400 people in attendance, the total money raised for the foundation’s charity partners will be sizeable.

Doing their bit: The England Footballers Foundation raised hundreds of thousands of pounds at a gala dinner and auction

Doing their bit: The England Footballers Foundation raised hundreds of thousands of pounds at a gala dinner and auction

The team were joined by former England players Gary Neville and Dennis Wise.

Wise came close to winning the most expensive auction item, a world exclusive Bentley car. But his top bid of 120,000 was beaten by an anonymous diner and it went for 130,000. John Terry also entered a bidding war with another anonymous guest to win dinner with JLS.

Missing out: Ashley Cole was beaten to dinner with singer Eddie Goulding by actor Ray Winstone

Missing out: Ashley Cole was beaten to dinner with singer Eddie Goulding by actor Ray Winstone

He had to settle for a draw after he bid 15,000 and the boy band said they would attend two dinners if that was matched, raising 30,000.

Terry was joined by Chelsea team-mate Frank Lampard in an emotional video pledging support to the Help Harry Help Others campaign.

They were close to Harry Moseley, who was born with an inoperable brain tumour and set up the campaign, but died last year aged 11.

Ashley Cole went head to head with actor Ray Winstone to win lunch with singer Ellie Goulding but he lost to Winstone’s offer of 10,000.

Dinner date: John Terry paid 15,000 for dinner with the boys from JLS

Dinner date: John Terry paid 15,000 for dinner with the boys from JLS

And all the England players entered the raffle to win a Range Rover but lost out to Stephanie Moore, the widow of Bobby Moore, who planned to donate it to an auction for the Bobby Moore Fund.

The England team have raised more than 2.2million for charities including Together for Short Lives, WellChild and the Bobby Moore Fund.

For more details: www.englandfootballersfoundation.co.uk

Australian Open 2012: Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams win

Sharapova and Williams make smooth progress into last 32 in Melbourne

Maria Sharapova made swift progress into the third round of the Australian Open, dropping just one game against American Jamie Hampton.

The Russian, seeded four, was pushed harder than the 6-0 6-1 scoreline suggests, but the outcome was never in doubt.

Hampton was comfortable trading blows from the baseline but Sharapova's ability to put away the mid-court ball proved decisive.

Easy: Maria Sharapova strolled into the next round at the Australian Open

Easy: Maria Sharapova strolled into the next round at the Australian Open

Hampton reached deuce in four of the six games in the opening set, but had to wait until the start of the second to get on the scoreboard.

And even then she was given little opportunity to build on that breakthrough as Sharapova maintained the pressure to secure the win in 64 minutes and a last-32 clash with Angelique Kerber or Stephanie Dubois.

Another former world No 1 also progressed early on day four in Melbourne, with Ana Ivanovic seeing off Michaella Krajicek 6-2 6-3.

Thirteen-time grand slam champion Serena Williams was pushed a little harder, especially in the second set, before progressing courtesy of a 6-0 6-4 win over Barbora Zahlavova Strycova.

Williams' only real concern early on was the sun from one end which forced her to abandon her usual powerful service delivery in favour of a sliced action.

Sitting down on the job: Former World No 1 Serena Williams also made it through

Sitting down on the job: Former World No 1 Serena Williams also made it through

But such was her domination in the rallies that her Czech opponent still failed to make any headway.

The second set was tighter with Zahlavova Strycova holding her own until a break gave Williams the chance to serve for the match.

The world number 49 had a point to make it 5-5 but Williams saw it out to move into a last-32 clash with either Dominika Cibulkova or Greta Arn.

Williams' scheduled fourth-round opponent is Vera Zvonareva and the seventh seed moved a step closer to that clash with a 6-1 7-6 (7/3) victory over Lucie Hradecka.

Kaia Kanepi, the 25th seed from Estonia, is out, though, after losing 6-2 7-5 to Ekaterina Makarova.

Sealed with a kiss: Petra Kvitova had to fight hard to make it through

Sealed with a kiss: Petra Kvitova had to fight hard to make it through

Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova hit back from a break down in the deciding set to edge out Spain's Carla Suarez Navarro.

Second seed Kvitova won the opener but then looked in real trouble when Suarez Navarro cruised through the second and established a 2-0 lead in the third.

The Czech battled level, however, before completing a 6-2 2-6 6-4 victory in one hour and 47 minutes.

'It was okay at the beginning but then I made many, many mistakes,' Kvitova said.

'I can improve for sure. It was very tough to get back in the third set.'

Australian Open 2012: Heather Watson, James Ward, Elena Baltacha, Laura Robson, Anne Keothavong out

Nightmare start Down Under for Britain as string of players are sent crashing out

The British effort at the Australian Open totally unravelled on day one with the Union Jack folded up at the end of day one with not a single set being won.

What began so promisingly with four direct entrants added to be qualifiers James Ward and Laura Robson ended in embarrassment as everyone except customary lone survivor Andy Murray – who plays on Tuesday against Ryan Harrison – was wiped out.

Elena Baltacha, Heather Watson, Laura Robson and James Ward all fell while Anne Keothavong, who had been suffering from food poisoning in the past 48 hours, retired when trailling Germany’s Mona Barthel 6-0.

Spirited: Heather Watson fought hard but was ultimately outclassed in Melbourne

Spirited: Heather Watson fought hard but was ultimately outclassed in Melbourne

Expectations needed to be realistic,
despite the relatively encouraging situation of having five British
players in action outside Wimbledon, making it six entrants in all, the
highest number from Britain at a non-SW19 Slam since 1992.

The only one facing lower ranked
opposition was national number one Baltacha, who would have had high
hopes of dismissing French veteran Stephanie Foretz Gacon, whose ranking
of 107 was only just enough to get her into the main draw.

The French player did start
particularly well, and Baltacha was unable to recover from the 0-4
deficit that quickly accrued. The Ipswich player’s game was unusually
error-strewn, and although she played a little more solidly thereafter
she could not take advantage of what was very much a decent draw.

She also became annoyed about line
calls and will be unhappy at failing to emulate last year, when she won a
round at all four Slams.

Pain game: Laura Robson can't bear to watch

Pain game: Laura Robson can't bear to watch

Pain game: Laura Robson can't bear to watch

Like Watson, Robson was to fall to a
heavy defeat, although the eventual scoreline of a 6-2 6-0 loss to
former world No 1 Jelena Jankovic was somewhat harsh.

Considering she was on crutches
before Xmas due to a small stress fracture it was no disgrace to go down
so heavily to the No 13 seed.

In warm early evening sunshine before
a supportive crowd on the Margaret Court Arena, Robson immediately went
behind although she had three points to break back for 3-3 that went
begging.

There were plenty more opportunities
to win games and she actually won 40 per cent of the points in the match
– evidently not in the right order. Although she can trade strokes with
the best she is not quite ready to overcome one who moves as well as
the Serb.

Too good: World No 3 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus was in stellar form

Too good: World No 3 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus was in stellar form

Watson was taught a painful lesson
by world number three Victoria Azarenka as she became one of the
earliest casualties of the whole event thanks to a 6-1 6-0 defeat on the
Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne Park.

And the disappointing start to the
tournament from a British angle continued when qualifier James Ward fell
6-4 6-3 6-4 to Slovenian Blaz Kavcic in the contrasting environment of
the windblown outside courts, a disappointing outcome to what looked a
winnable encounter.

Guernsey teenager Watson found
herself overpowered, not to mention outgrunted, by the tall baseliner
from Belarus who arrived here fresh from winning the WTA Tour event in
Sydney last week. In high temperatures that greeted the start of the
season’s first Grand Slam Watson was short of artillery against a high
class opponent.

Can't watch: James Ward lost his discipline as he also went out

Can't watch: James Ward lost his discipline as he also went out

While Watson managed to keep her
opponent out on court for 67 minutes the outcome was never in doubt once
Azarenka recovered from a slightly shaky start. The Channel Islander
actually won the first game and had a break point in the second but then
double faulted twice to get broken and lost all momentum.

Azarenka’s grunt-yelp is an appalling
sound but she showed what a formidable ball striker she is in tandem
with that and her opponent simply had no answer. Watson is a fine
athlete and doughty competitor but still needs to add clout to her serve
and groundstrokes if she is to build on the promising start to her
career.

She did have game points through the
match but could never convert them, hampered by a particularly bad day
with the serve, and that helped make the scoreline look fairly brutal.

Fierce, hot gusts that made play
difficult awaited Ward as his prize for coming through three qualifying
rounds and it was never easy against someone who nonetheless he will
have fancied his chances against.
He had plenty of them in all three seets but too often was let down by
sloppy errors when he threatened to put the world number 104 under
pressure.

It did not help that the 24 year-old
Londoner had a bad day with his serve, landing in only 47 per cent of
his first deliveries, although the wind was a factor.

Bowing out: Elena Baltacha failed to shine against Stephanie Foretz Gacon

Bowing out: Elena Baltacha failed to shine against Stephanie Foretz Gacon

At the end of the second set, when he had broken back into contention
only to lose his serve again, he angrily slammed a ball into the
backfence and then smashed his racket into the ground.

It seemed to do
the trick as he went 2-0 up in the third, but then the slippage came
again and he lost the next four games, from which there was no recovery
and he lost in two hours and 17 minutes.

Having done so well to qualify for a
Slam for the first time he can take something away from here, but was
hugely disappointed not have taken advantage of a decent draw.

All in all, a day to forget, and yet again it is a case of Over to you, Andy.

AUSTRALIAN OPEN 2012: Heather Watson leads British charge

Teenage star Watson heads British charge on opening day of Australian Open

Heather Watson will open proceedings on Rod Laver Arena on Monday when she takes on third seed Victoria Azarenka in her first-round clash at the Australian Open.

The 19-year-old from Guernsey is first up on the main show court in Melbourne on a day which features four other Brits in action.

James Ward and Laura Robson, whose victories in qualifying swelled the British contingent in the main draws to six – a 20-year best for an overseas grand slam, also play their opening encounters.

Leading: Heather Watson is one of six British singles players in Australia

Leading: Heather Watson is one of six British singles players in Australia

Ward meets Slovenian Blaz Kavcic while Robson takes on 13th seed Jelena Jankovic on Margaret Court Arena.

Anne Keothavong and Elena Baltacha are both on court 11, as is Ward. Baltacha faces Stephanie Foretz Gacon and Keothavong follows with her clash against Mona Barthel.

Andy Murray, the fourth seed, will open his bid to reach a third successive final here on Tuesday when he meets young American Ryan Harrison.

AUSTRALIAN OPEN 2012: Andy Murray to face Ryan Harrison in first round

Djokovic looming for Murray as British star is handed Harrison test Down Under

Andy Murray avoided his usual potential semi-final clash with Rafael Nadal when the draw was made for next week's Australian Open.

Instead he is in the same half as defending champion Novak Djokovic, with an awkward first round against highly-rated American teenager Ryan Harrison.

Great Scot: Murray will face Ryan Harrison in the first round

Great Scot: Murray will face American Ryan Harrison in the first round

Life or Ryan: Harrison is highly rated and could pose Murray a problem

Life or Ryan: Harrison is highly rated and could pose Murray a problem

Murray's quarter is stocked with Frenchmen and he could face Gael Monfils in the last sixteen with a possible quarter final against Jo Wilfried Tsonga, who is already showing excellent form this year.

Heather Watson was drawn against world No 3 Victoria Azarenka while British No 1 Elena Baltacha should face defending champion Kim Clijsters in the second round if she beats France's Stephanie Foretz. Anne Keothavong will play Germany's Mona Barthel.